The Greenwich Recycling Advisory Board and Waste Free Greenwich, in partnership with the Department of Public Works, Conservation Commission and Greenwich Green & Clean, announce the launch of a municipal food scrap recycling pilot in April 2020. The drop-off food scrap recycling pilot will be voluntary and free to all Greenwich residents. Residents will collect food scraps at home and bring them to a designated location at Holly Hill Resource Recovery Center. A hauler will cart the material to a commercial composting facility to be turned into nutrient-rich compost. All food, including meat and dairy products, tea bags, cut flowers and paper towels and napkins will be accepted. Kits, containing bins and compostable bags, will be offered for sale in spring.
Food scraps are one of the largest components of trash sent to landfills and incinerators. In Connecticut, food scraps account for over 22% of municipal solid waste. However, food scraps are not trash. “Removing food scraps from the waste stream and composting them produces a beneficial product,” said Sally Davies, chair of GRAB. “Why should we be paying to throw that resource away?” Recycling food scraps into compost captures nutrients and energy and returns them to the environment. When food scraps are incinerated or landfilled, these resources are lost. Food scraps are wet and heavy, decreasing the efficiency of incinerators, and in landfills, the material creates methane, a potent greenhouse gas that traps heat contributing to climate change. Composting food scraps turns that story around, by producing a useful and valuable product that gives back to our nutrient life cycle, resulting in cleaner soil, water and air.